La capitale parte deux

Trip Start Jul 01, 2013
Trip End Sep 07, 2013

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Flag of Canada  , Ontario,
Wednesday, August 14, 2013

I'm not sure why the title is in French as I am in Ottawa, Ontario. Maybe it sounds more official, or maybe it is representative of the absurd lengths to which Canadians go to a) preserve their heritage in language and b) please Quebec. Because of one province, and various small communities in surrounding provinces, the entire country must present all information bilingually. I heard recently that, by law only French is allowed when calling your dog in dog parks in Quebec. I cannot verify that story, but it seemed plausible at the time.

I am becoming accustomed to being greeted with 'hello bonjour!'; It happened to today at parliament, multiple times. Parliament is a beautiful piece of architecture, almost as impressive at as England's, but not quite. Since the parliamentarians are on summer break like school children, we were able to walk around the floor of both the House of Commons and the Senate. It was a great tour, but I got in trouble a few times for not paying attention and taking pictures where I shouldn't, thus the picture you see of the library is likely the only one taken by a tourist in some time.

I made my way around the city today sightseeing, and Ottawa has blown me away. My expectations were not high, granted, but it seems an incredibly livable city. The winters are apparently bearable because the cold is very dry and skies are often blue, so you learn to live with it. Public transportation and bikes are widely used, so much so that bikes create traffic jams in the morning, not enough to cause any damage of course, they're bikes!

I met up with my hosts for the evening, a couple in the same neighborhood as Dax, just down the street oddly. We had a great meal in with great conversation, and their accommodations were more than comfortable. Alex had some recommendations for a route between Montreal and Quebec City that I will certainly heed.

Ottawa ON, 0 miles, day 45
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Benoit Herve Bligny Beaurenard on

Bien fait avec la francaise canadienne! Gros bissous!

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